A smile that is missing teeth can be embarrassing and sometimes even decrease a person’s self-esteem. Also, even one missing tooth can cause the rest of the teeth to shift out of alignment. Because of this, our dentists recommend that people with one or more adjacent missing teeth replace them with dental bridges. There are several different types of dental bridges but they all work on the same concept. They are made to fill in the gap left by the missing tooth or teeth by “bridging” that gap.
Fixed dental bridges use abutment teeth on either side of the area where teeth are missing in order to hold the bridge firmly in place. Two porcelain crowns are fitted over the abutment teeth to create a sturdy and durable solution. The gap is filled in with one or more pontics, or prosthetic teeth, that are exactly colored and shaped to match the patient’s own natural teeth.
Bridges can also be attached to dental implants for a more permanent solution. Dental implants are placed in the jaw bone and act as artificial tooth roots. Our dentist attaches the bridge to the tiny titanium implant with a cap that is fitted to its tip. While the bridge itself may need to be restored or replaced after many years of use, the implants will remain a permanent structure for the bridge to attach to.
Our dentists recommend dental bridges to many patient’s missing teeth so that they do not gain any further orthodontic issues that might require even more extensive and costly procedures. When a gap is left in a person’s smile, the surrounding teeth automatically want to fill in that gap. They do this by beginning to shift toward the open space. This shifting process leaves other teeth vulnerable, however, and therefore should not be allowed to happen. Our dentist will help prevent this with a dental bridge that is customized to correct each patient’s unique smile.
If you are missing teeth, time is not on your side. Call today to schedule a consultation with our dentists to find out more.